17th December 2012 at 10:01 #577651
Anonymous17th December 2012 at 10:01 #577652
This journey was in Business and not in First. Seems my entry was gremlinized!!
This review actually relates to two connecting flights, EK511 (in the 777-200) and EK025 (in a A340-300) which are combined here because of the chalk and cheese service I received, which, according to many who write in this Forum, appears to typify Emirates.
I checked in early for my initial flight from Delhi to Dubai. Booked in Economy by my Indian counterparts, I was up-graded at check-in which was a nice bonus. I had looked to up-grade on miles earlier (as I had done for other legs on this trip) but there was no availabilty at the time so this was a bonus.
Immigration and security were quite quick. I browsed the shops and went to the pharmacy as I had developed a nasty check cold while in India. After this, I headed to the Lounge which is spacious, comfortable and offers excellent food options.
The flight was called in the Lounge and I made my way to the Gate. Five checks of my boarding pass later, I was aboard the aircraft. The 777-200 seats seem to be similar to the 380 but without the elaborate surround. I settled in and watched a service comedy unfold!!
The whole 3’40” flight seemed to be a cabin crew training session. Service was incredibly slow, crew members seemed to tripping over eachother. Questions about drinks, menu choices etc were asked multiple times, orders were misdelivered and so on and on and on.
The biggest problem was one of language. A large number of cabin crew seemed to have woeful English and could not understand requests beyond the very basic and standard.
Crew seemed to have a real problem with European names – this is a simple training point and one that is readily undertaken in reverse for Europeans travelling in Asia so I cannot see why cabin crew should struggle with names if properly trained. Maybe this reflects the rapid and continuing growth of the Emirates fleet combined with a wish to maintain lowest possible labour costs?
There did not seem to be any sense of cabin management or control in place and, remember, this was a premium cabin and, admittedly, a full flight. As a Gold Card holder, I did not receive any particular recognition from the CSD or crew.
The flight was slow because of strong head winds and we landed a few minutes late in Dubai. I progressed through transfer security which is a breeze at lunchtime (compared to my normal nocturnal experiences) and made a brief visit to the Lounge. It was then time to head back out to my next flight to Glasgow.
I arrived at the Gate in good time to walk straight onto the aircraft and the change from the previous flight was striking. The crew were calm and helpful throughout, professional and engaging with passengers. The CSD came and talked to all Gold card holders.
I was feeling fairly rough by that time and one of the crew, Majed, offered me a non-alcoholic elixia, tea, lemon and honey and plied me with this thoughout the flight. The team overall in th Business cabin were competent, confident and engaged – such a contrast to my earlier flight.
Seats on the A340 are not comparable to the B777 but, for a daytime flight, perfectly acceptable. Meal service was effecient and flexible – a fellow passenger looked for his food late, having slept early in the flight and they happily complied.
We landed about 15 minutes early and were soon off the aircraft. Emirates like to deplane by class but the one airbridge facility in Glasgow means that this is not possible with the A340 so the one or two passengers in First had to muck in with the rest of us. With no checked luggage, I was quickly out and into my complementary limo transfer home.
Emirates should be concerned at the massive gap in service standards I encountered on these two flights – one a deal breaker and the oher a real deal maker, if you like!!
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